Well, more exactly petting cats help relaxing and thus being relaxed helps you do a bit everything like writing, thus, petting cats help to way more than simply writing.
Long live the Empire by the way. :D
Well with all those welcoming effort that you're doing, It shouldn't be too hard for you to become a moderator. Although i'm surprised a old chap like you still got the time to be doing all of this. I myself going get busy after the holidays since i signed a contract for a few months oversea.